Torqeedo doubles power
The German manufacturer of electric power units for smaller craft has recently doubled the power of its inboard electric propulsion motors writes Dag Pike.
Previously the inboard electric motors from Torqeedo were available in power outputs up to 50 kW but new units recently developed now raise the power available to 100 kW which the company claims will open up a whole new market sector to electric propulsion. In particular the available power will now be suitable for powering planing boats of significant size.
The new electric motors will be available during 2019 and Torqeedo claims that the high torque of these electric motors will help to get boats onto the plane much quicker leading to a better response that is available for diesel power. In addition, because the electric motors can operate at close to zero rpm the manoeuvring of boats will be greatly improved because of much better control of engine thrust. At full power these electric motors will operate at 2400rpm.
These new electric motors will be capable of powering planning boats up around 12 metres in length and displacement hulls of at least twice that size. This will open up a considerable market to electric propulsion in the commercial sector. In particular harbour craft such as harbour patrol boats, survey craft and diving support craft can benefit from electric propulsion with considerable savings in operating costs and maintenance. All of these craft have operating scenarios that allow for daily or more frequent charging.
To meet the increased battery capacity to power these larger electric motors Torqeedo has also introduced larger capacity battery packs. All of the Torqeedo battery packs are based on technology developed by car manufacturer BMW using lithium ion technology. Because these are car based units the power density is important because of limited space and weight restrictions. These features can be equally important for planning boats and the new Deep Blue batteries are claimed to offer a 30% increase in capacity within the same footprint of earlier batteries and a high energy density of 144 kW per kg.
An important feature of battery powered boats is the battery life and Torqeedo is offering a 9 year limited warranty on these new batteries. They can be fully charged in 1 ½ hours provided that there are adequate shore facilities.
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